Before I left the UK, Claire – my dancing complice in spirit – and I were joking that I will dance around the world and through my sabbatical, discover all these new dances. As much as we had a good laugh imagining myself dancing across the boarders it is true that my travel and intentions for the sabbatical are also very much focused around exploring the “the move”.
I always enjoyed the dance and even more so when I grew older. The last year I discovered more to dancing and body movements than just an activity every once in a while when going out with friends and ending up dancing till the morning. Dancing and different types of body work (somatic practises) make me become more fully present and alive, my energy is expanding and it easily infects others with a wave of positive energy.
Besides the great energy it produces, I noticed that dancing and conscious body movements help me to better ground myself to let go and feel more centred in my everyday life. Movements and dance can help to leave behind longstanding habits, to be fully in the moment and change one’s conditioned responses into conscious, intentional actions.
The Embodied Presencing workshop with Arawana Hayashi (called Making a True Move) earlier this year was one of my best and most profound experiences in this regard. It is basically an exploration of your intuitive body, becoming more present in the moment (great mindfulness practise) by tuning in to your body, letting it flow the way it wants to and at times get even surprised by it. The movements are done mostly in silence and are not following any particular choreography other than your own particular rhythm, pace and finding your balance between individual experience and the experience with another (in duet or group). The movements are all with an appreciation and consideration of maintaining a balance between rest and movement (same as in music there is this interplay between sound and silence). After these 2 days, I connected with Amy and Chris with the intention to continue this beautiful practise and we continued meeting regularly, building an embodied presencing practise in London.
The picture above is from our last session in London with Amy, Chris and Marc. I miss the group and the practise and hope to continue with it as I travel, some of its elements though I found in Nia dancing which I am going to twice a week now in Budapest.
When I was in a Scottish small village this spring I was taken along to Nia dancing the first time - it was introduced to me then as dancing yoga. I was amazed how much fun it was and the great energy it brought about. This dance draws from dance arts, martial arts and healing arts to create purposeful movement and is always danced with great rhythmic music that would probably have you swing even in the tube ;) It is pure pleasure, engaging your body, mind and emotions in a very expressive and playful wa and inspires to continue dancing through life afterwards.
I gradually see and experience more and more how every movement in life is a dance.
And last piece of dance deliciousness on my travel is French Breton Dancing which is a great experience of dancing in and with a community. There is a big French Dance festival in Gennetines in mid July that I am hoping to go to for a week. French Breton Dancing was introduced to me by Richard, a tree surgeon from New Zealand who kindly offered a free class to us. It is danced with beautiful – mostly live played- music (listen to this) using string instruments, the accordion and is danced in pairs and groups – smaller of e.g. 4 and larger groups that could fill a hall.